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What’s Thwarting American Innovation? Too Much Science
Categories: Innovation

FastCompany recently interviewed Roger Martin, Dean of the Rotman School of Management at the U of Toronto. He says innovation can be stymied by too much data. Excerpts below.

I want to know what do you think is the nemesis of innovation at most companies?

“By pushing the principles of scientific management too far, corporations are short-circuiting their own futures, says the designiest dean of all the business schools. “The enemy of innovation is the phrase ‘prove it,'” Roger Martin says.

“The business world is tired of having armies of analysts descend on their companies,” he says. “You can’t send a 28-year-old with a calculator to solve your problems.”

The problem, says Martin, author of a new book, The Design of Business: Why Design Thinking is the Next Competitive Advantage, is that corporations have pushed analytical thinking so far that it’s unproductive. “No idea in the world has been proved in advance with inductive or deductive reasoning,” he says.

The answer? Bring in the folks whose job it is to imagine the future, and who are experts in intuitive thinking. That’s where design thinking comes in, he says.

Posted by Kathy Sandler on Tuesday, November 17, 2009 at 12:01 AM

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